Last week feelings were just but agony, like if springtime had arrived and squeezed playoff time. This Saturday the palace was on fire again. So little to have with last season... Asefa Estudiantes overtook Valencia Basket to climb high on the league ranks.
Ten thousand got emotional after the game. They claimed the players out from the locker rooms after the 85-82 win to a direct contendent. The thousands had started with a standing ovation to journalist Felipe Sevillano, who had recently passed away. One of the writers of the 60 Anniv. History Club Book was to miss an intensity masterclass that wasn't seen since the 2004 season.
Those thousands roared quickly. One on ones began between Rafa Martínez and Carl English, the shooters of both teams. Expectations from the canadian (20 ppg season 2012-13) were at the highest. But visitors got the lead commanded by his best scorer this year, Doellman (13.2 ppg for the season) until Txus Vidorreta ordered an extra dose of intensity. De-fense, the spirit of the new season.
ASEFA ESTU FILLS THE TANK-IRKSAY
Tariq Kirksay commanded the resurrection. The fierce forward insists on showing what he signed for. His sort of school teaching activated young prospect combo guard Jaime Fernández, returning PF Englishman Daniel Clark (after his post-Olympics ankle surgery), and the jewel of Louisville Cardinals, young fellow Kyle Kuric. The southern rookie scored 6 points on a row. Estudiantes was running again, it looked like one of those old youtube videos with the yellow t-shirts and the four thousand crowd at the old Magariños playground.
Doellman reacted and worked for the visitor lead. For the first time this season, Estudiantes was not over 20 points at the end of first quarter. Was it going to mean anything? Jaime Fernández scored again after giving fresh air to a still-feverish guard Jayson Granger. The inside job was given to more boys from the school; Daniel Clark and Lucas Nogueira expelled Justin Doellman from local domains. Valencia had to give the ball to the best rebounder last season, Faverani.
Asefa Estudiantes got a ticket to showtime last summer. His name is Carl. Although shooter Pau Ribas sustained visitors alive, Carl English layup unchained the inside forces. 7ft3 Nogueira rolled the ball on his fingers to add another extra basket. Kuric scored from his own bedroom's corner and freshman Fernández enlarged local advantage to 32-26. Coach Perasovic tried to stop it soon. Ex-local coach (he did not draw too much applause though) ordered one extra kick but King Kyle and Nogueira counter-attacked Rafa Martinez three-pointers and Lukauskis effectivity.
Local old school -Barnes, Kirksay & English- established 45-38 at halftime but this is another sort of games rather than those last season. It looks like a seven point lead is nothing. You'd better smash a team like Valencia before starting the chants. Doellman took the captain role and brought local lead to nothing. Everything had to be restarted. Guerrilla war had consumed 25 minutes of the game and Txus Vidorreta asked for the guys to react at the time out.
Gabriel dunked like he had never made. Rafa Martínez and Markovic scored from the outside. What a shooting range from the visitors!
King Karl took Carl English's daily responsibility and went on and on. He finished with 17 points with no mistake for a total league score of 17. But this team Valencia is used to dense games where nobody gets to ninety and systems are always pushed to the edge. Faverani and Markovic duo made the lead to return to the orange county. The bloke that won everything with Serbian Hemofarm impulsed the outside action and atracted defensors towards him. It permitted more space for Doellman who hammered the local system (for a total 19pt, 3st and a league score of 17).
Last quarter slowed the scoring. Faverani and English incarnated the blurriness of adding points with free-throws. Valencia Basket got into bonus due to a 30 foul stats and pressure went up inside the 10,000 thermomix. Above one billion bar pressure it was obvious that the game would go for the team dealing best with tension. Serbian forward Markovic scored 5 points in less than a minute. Rafa Martinez had the chance to kill the game but his 3p shot got missed. Instead of getting back to deffense he vividly argued the referees and forgot Carl English for a fast-break. Doellman added the 82 to VBC total score but Lamont Barnes showed why he is a respected worker at the paint (9 points no-miss and 2 off rebounds).
SO QUIET AT THE EASTERN FRONT
Markovic missed the three-pointer again and Doellman insisted. Gabriel rebounded solid and got another chance at the free-throws. Estudiantes had a +3 with 18 seconds. This time Perasovic crashed against a dolby-surround deffense (traps coming from every corner of the room). This could be the summary of this season change of look at the Ramiro boys. There is a high-intensity fiver at every second of the game. Does suffering pay off? Who knows. Perhaps this season it does.
ASEFA ESTUDIANTES 85 (18-27-20-20) Fisher 0, Fernández 8, Clark 2, Granger 9, Gabriel 6, Kuric 17, Kirksay 8, English 22, Barnes 9, Nogueira 4. Didn't played: Vicedo y Guerra.
VALENCIA BASKET 82 (19-19-23-21) Markovic 12, Ribas 8, Doellman 19, Keselj 0, Lishchuk 5, Faverani 15, Dubljevic 4, Lukauskis 2, Martínez 13, Pietrus 4, San Miguel 0. Don't played:Abia.